The airport is known as Fukuoka, the train station as Hakata. Fukuoka has transformed itself over the last decade into one of Japan’s most cosmopolitan and internationalised cities. Seoul and Shanghai are among its nearest neighbours. Fukuoka’s most recent international aspirations include a bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics – going up against Tokyo among others.
Nationally the city is known for its ‘Hakata bijin’ (beautiful women), its feisty and much-loved baseball team the Daiei Hawks, and, most of all, Hakata rāmen (Chinese-style egg noodles in broth).
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